• A 212 Year Old House in Mainville

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    212yohoownerInterviewers:  When was the house built?

    Mrs. Bashore:  1792

    Interviewers:  What’s it made out of?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Stone.  The walls are eighteen inches thick.

    Interviewers:  Wow.  How old is the house?

    Mrs. Bashore:  You figure it up.

    Interviewers:   What period was it built during, Colonial or even before that?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well I don’t know, whenever 1792 was.  I would say it was colonial.

    Interviewers:  Ok, eighteenth century.  How long have you lived here?

    Mrs. Bashore: Forty-two years.

    Interviewers:  Who owned the house before you?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Howard Klair.

    Interviewers:  Who was the first owner of the house?

    Mrs. Bashore:  I am guessing it was Charles Grover. 

    Interviewers:  How many owners has the house had?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well, according to the courthouse, I would say, 1…2…3…4…5…6…7…8… I guess we’re about the ninth one.

    Interviewers:  How has the house changed since it was built?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well, when it was built it had eleven rooms and now it has eight.  Because this was two rooms, the dining room was two rooms, you can see where…

    Interviewers:  Oh, yeah, the pillars.

    Mrs. Bashore:  Exactly.  And the bedroom upstairs was two rooms.

    Interviewers:  Ok, cool.  Does the house have any significant historical background?

    Mrs. Bashore:  I don’t know, except it was built when there were Indian raids going on here.

    Interviewers:  What would happen when the Indian raids would, like, happen?

    fireplaceMrs. Bashore:  Everybody would go down to the basement.  And there is a fireplace down there that you really ought to see.  It’s the biggest fireplace I have ever seen.  And neighbors, there weren’t many neighbors, but everybody in the area would come here and hide because the Indians would be afraid; they would see smoke coming out of the chimney but they wouldn’t see any people.  And there’s a place in the basement about this big that will hold a rifle.  And when you look out there you can see the whole property.  So the men here would be shooting at the Indians and this scared the Indians because they would see smoke and they would hear shots but they would see no people. 

    Interviewers:  That’s really cool.  Wouldn’t they see the door that they went to…?

    Mrs. Bashore:  They never got that close.

    Interviewers:  Ah.  Is there any part of the house that is original?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Yea.  It’s all original except my kitchen and the two rooms upstairs.  They were brought down in the ‘40s. 

    Interviewers:  How large is the property?

    Mrs. Bashore:  We have 2.4 acres.

    Interviewers:  What, if any, artifacts have you found on the property?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well there were a lot of arrowheads found when they dug below the fence in the area from the fence down to the creek.  That’s where the Indians would fight from.

    Interviewers:  Cool.  How has the property changed since you moved in? 

    roomofwalnutMrs. Bashore:  Since we moved in the property hasn’t changed, because the pond was there.  The property hasn’t changed.  But the house has changed a bit, because we put up- this is not paneling.  This is pieces of black walnut from North Carolina.  We got it by the box load and we had carpenters put it in.  My husband would not have paneling, because it was against… you know, they didn’t have paneling years ago. 

    Interviewers:  There are a lot of buildings and structures on this property.  Were they all built the same time that the house was built? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well I wouldn’t know that, but they were here when we came. 

    Interviewers:  What were the buildings originally used for?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well, the butcher house was used for butchering, the smokehouse- there was pipes from the smokehouse down to the butcher house, I don’t know how they did it.  I guess maybe they hung the meat in the smokehouse.  And in those days, there was no garage because there were no cars, but the original property had the barn. 

    Interviewers:  Oh, ok.  Where was the barn? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  Where it is today. 

    Interviewers:  Oh, that barn.

    Mrs. Bashore:  That is not my property.  We just bought so much and then it was sold to Robert Bronson. 

    Interviewers:  Are there any interesting stories associated with the house, other than the Indian raids? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  Not that I’m aware of.

    Interviewers:  What were your experiences with the flood of 1972?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well, nothing at all happened to the house.  We didn’t even get a drop of water in our basement, but we were stranded.  Because the creek overflowed and we couldn’t go in that direction, and going toward Mifflinville, the bridge was completely washed out so we couldn’t go that direction.  So, I wanted to see my neighbor, and I started up the road with my daughter Barbara and all of a sudden she yelled “stop” because there was a mudslide.  And I never in my life had seen a mudslide before and up the road about a half mile, why, just the mud come floating down; it was really something to see.

    Interviewers:  That’s really neat.

    Mrs. Bashore:  Except that I had to back up all the way to the house; we couldn’t get through.  So we were stranded; we couldn’t go in any direction.  But that was it.

    Interviewers:  Has the house ever been damaged by any other storms or fires or anything?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Not that I know of.

    Interviewers: That’s good.  Is the pond original to the house and the property?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Uh, since we’ve been here, I don’t know who put it in, but we get all of our water from the spring.  And the water that we don’t use goes down into the pond.  And when that gets to a certain height it goes out a pipe right down to the street or whatever you want to call it.

    Interviewers:  Was it always lined with those rocks and stuff?

    Mrs. Bashore:  No.  Your grandfather put that up because we were getting too many turtles and snakes.  And he thought if he lined it with stone and cemented the bottom it would do away with it.  And I guess it has, because, we get turtles, but I’ve never seen a snake in there.

    Interviewers:  Did you get the stones from around here; from around the property? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  It was from over near Ashland.

    Interviewers:  Oh, okay.

    Mrs. Bashore:  We went over with our station wagon and loaded up.  Three times.

    Interviewers:  In your opinion, what is the best part of the property or the house?

    Mrs. Bashore:  The house is my favorite part.  I like the property in the wintertime because I don’t have to mow grass. 

    Interviewers:  What is the bell at the springhouse used for?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well, many many many years ago it was on a post and that’s how they would get the men in for the meal.

    Interviewers:  That’s cool.  Is there any evidence from the Indian raids that’s still here in the house?  Like that hole you were talking about that they shoot at?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well, that’s there and the fireplace, that they cooked for all the people that were here.

    Interviewers:  Is the hole still open so you can see out?

    Mrs. Bashore:  No.  You won’t see all the way out because I had it closed because I saw a snake in the basement.  And even though it was a baby, that was it.  I made your grandfather close it.  But you can still see.  It’s closed so you can’t see outside, but you can see where it was from the inside.  And someday somebody might reopen it, but I wouldn’t know why.  Not while I’m here. 

    Interviewers:  Do all these fireplaces still work?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Yea.  This one does, but we had this one put in.  But there is one up in my bedroom right above this, and that fireplace in there was the important one; in the dining room.

    Interviewers:  What made it important? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  Because that’s the one they used the most. 

    Interviewers:  I see.  Are there any other fireplaces in the house?

    Mrs. Bashore:  No, just the one in the bedroom and the one in the dining room.  But I can’t use the one in the dining room.  And I don’t use the one in the bedroom.  Who is gonna carry wood up there and leave all that dirt?  I mean no.  No way.  In those days they had to.  They didn’t have a furnace.   I have a furnace.  

    Interviewers:   What was it like the first few years that you moved into the house? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well it was before Penn Dot; and we got snowed in a few times.  And your father, he had to get to the college, so he had us all out shoveling.  And we shoveled snow from the garage down to about the house and finally my son, who was about sixteen, said, “Pop, do we have to shovel you all the way to Mainville?”  Because Penn Dot wasn’t around, so we were snowed in for about three days. 

    Interviewers:  Are there a lot of critters running around the property? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  When we first moved here, the woman who had lived here before didn’t walk out.  She just would go up and get in her car.  So the property wasn’t disturbed until we moved in.  And there were snakes; quite a few.  We killed about seventy-five in the first five years.  Since then, maybe one or two every year.  And in the last couple years I’ve only seen one.  And I hope I don’t see any this year. And skunks.  We have skunks around every once in a while.  And groundhogs and bunnies. 

    Interviewers:  Do you have anything living in your pond?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Oh, yes.  Fish.  And turtles. 

    Interviewers:  What kind of fish?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Goldfish, because I put them there.  

    Interviewers:  Are there any other kinds that you’ve tried that’ve died or anything? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  No.  The snapping turtles will get in there; they come up from the creek, and your father used to sit down there on the dock and wait for them to stick their heads up and then he would shoot them and dive in after them and get them.  We didn’t want snapping turtles where we might put our feet in. 

    Interviewers:  That’s nasty.  What did you do with the turtles after he pulled them out?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Well, there was a man in Mainville that liked them.  We used to make soup out of them and give them to him. 

    Interviewers:  Did you ever fish the fish out of your pond?

    Mrs. Bashore:  Years ago, yea.  When Renee was about twelve, she went down.  At that time, someone had stocked it with all kinds of fish.  She caught about a dozen and we had a fish fry.  After that I stocked it with goldfish and that was the end of the eating fish. 

    Interviewers:  This house has seen a lot of people come and go.  Do you entertain, or did you ever? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  Oh, yea.  I had about at least three big parties a year, and I did it all myself.  And I had lots and lots of company.  I hate to tell you, but after forty years, most of them are dead.  But my parents and his parents and friends… it was almost like a hotel in the summertime, people coming and going.

    Interviewers: Do you still entertain at all? 

    Mrs. Bashore:  Not much.  My card club. 

    Interviewers:  thank you for taking time out of your day to tell us about this historic house.

    Mrs. Bashore:  You’re very welcome.



Last Modified on September 1, 2006